The NBA notebook …
CHARLOTTE ó New Charlotte Bobcats coach and North Carolina alum Larry Brown jokes it’s “tough to coach a Duke guy.”
But Brown had high praise for former Blue Devil DeMarcus Nelson after he was one of six guards to audition for the Bobcats on Wednesday.
Nelson is projected to be a second-round pick despite being an All-Atlantic Coast Conference first team selection last season. There are concerns about whether the 6-foot-3 Nelson is too small to a be a shooting guard in the NBA or has the ballhandling skills to play point guard.
Brown said Nelson was more skilled than he thought and predicted Nelson will play in the NBA.
The Bobcats have the ninth and 38th picks in this month’s draft
CHICAGO ó Doug Collins and the Chicago Bulls won’t be reuniting.
Concerned that a second tenure as the Bulls’ coach would spoil their friendship, Collins and chairman Jerry Reinsdorf agreed during a Friday phone conversation that the Bulls should look elsewhere.
“I called Jerry this afternoon and said, ‘Let’s move forward and make sure we stay the friends that we have been for 25 years,”‘ said Collins, who coached Chicago from 1986-89. “It had to be a home run, and both of us had a little angst over it. So we both agreed it wasn’t the best to keep going this way.”
NEW YORK ó The Lakers-Celtics matchup gave the NBA finals’ television ratings a big boost.
Game 1 on Thursday averaged an 8.7 rating on ABC, the network said Friday. That’s up 38 percent from the 6.3 during last year’s Cavaliers-Spurs series.
It’s the highest Game 1 rating since Lakers-Pistons in 2004 drew a 9.8.
MAYO’S NEW AGENTHUNTINGTON, W.Va. ó O.J. Mayo has new representation ó LeBron James’ agent, Leon Rose.
Mayo and agent Calvin Andrews of Bill Duffy Associates parted ways last month over the distraction of allegations first revealed in an ESPN report.
Former Mayo associate Louis Johnson told ESPN that Mayo associate Rodney Guillory received money from the agency BDA Sports and funneled cash and gifts to Mayo.
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